Review: Jackaby by William Ritter

Posted October 8, 2014 by Katrina @ Bookish Things in Book Review, Giveaway / 0 Comments

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Jackaby by William RitterJackaby by William Ritter
Published by Algonquin Young Readers on 9/16/2014
Genres: Fantasy & Magic, Young Adult
Pages: 299
Format: Hardcover
Source: Publisher
Buy on AmazonBarnes & NobleThe Book Depository

“Miss Rook, I am not an occultist,” Jackaby said. “I have a gift that allows me to see truth where others see the illusion--and there are many illusions. All the world’s a stage, as they say, and I seem to have the only seat in the house with a view behind the curtain.”

Newly arrived in New Fiddleham, New England, 1892, and in need of a job, Abigail Rook meets R. F. Jackaby, an investigator of the unexplained with a keen eye for the extraordinary--including the ability to see supernatural beings. Abigail has a gift for noticing ordinary but important details, which makes her perfect for the position of Jackaby’s assistant. On her first day, Abigail finds herself in the midst of a thrilling case: A serial killer is on the loose. The police are convinced it’s an ordinary villain, but Jackaby is certain it’s a nonhuman creature, whose existence the police--with the exception of a handsome young detective named Charlie Cane--deny.

Doctor Who meets Sherlock in William Ritter’s debut novel, which features a detective of the paranormal as seen through the eyes of his adventurous and intelligent assistant in a tale brimming with cheeky humor and a dose of the macabre.


Jackaby is fun and mysterious. We have a quirky detective and a young assistant that just wants to be seen for who she is.
I instantly fell in love with Jackaby. He very much reminds me of the 10th Doctor. He sees things that others cannot, and doesn’t let how other people see him get in the way of solving a crime. Abigail Rook is our narrator. She wants to be seen as more than just a girl. She knows that she can be an amazing assistant and is grateful that Jackaby has given her that chance. Abigail takes the world Jackaby introduces her to in stride. She wants to help people, and knows that Jackaby is one that can do that. There are also a few side characters that are pretty amazing. Each person adds to the story, and brings different levels of paranormal to it.
I loved the mystery. It was somewhat predictable, but the ride to get to the answers more than made up for that. I liked getting to know the town of New Fiddleham, even though some of the residents are pretty rude. I liked the dislike/need relationship that Jackaby has with the police. There were a few humorous confrontations between the two. There isn’t much romance, but I loved that about this novel. I think if there was, it wouldn’t have hooked me as much as it did.
Jackaby is a quick read that you won’t want to put down. I was up until the wee hours of the morning to finish it.


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Katrina @ Bookish Things

About Katrina @ Bookish Things

I'm a mom of two and love to read, listen to music, and rock out at concerts. Sometimes you can find me reading, or writing, in between sets at concerts. I read many genres, and have a TBR mountain.

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